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Complete Ishrat Jahan probe, file chargesheet by July 4: HC to CBI

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Jun 18, 2013 at 07:11pm IST

New Delhi: The Gujarat High Court on Tuesday asked the CBI to complete investigation in the Ishrat Jahan encounter case and file the chargesheet in the court by July 4, 2013.

The HC further directed the CBI to disassociate IPS officer Satish Verma from the case. The HC said that the CBI should focus investigation on illegal confinement and fake encounter.

The court also said that the CBI should not waste time in unnecessary issues and should not waste time in finding out the status of the persons who have been killed.

Meanwhile, Ishrat's mother Shamima Kausar said that she is happy that after fighting for nine years the truth has finally surfaced.

"I've been fighting for the last nine years and after so long the truth is out. My daughter has been proven innocent, Shamima said.

"We had been always saying Ishrat was innocent. She was killed in cold blood, this was a fake encounter. We had full faith in our judiciary, now SIT report has proved Ishrat was innocent," Ishrat's uncle Rauf Lala.

Earlier in the day, the CBI questioned Intelligence Bureau Special Director Rajinder Kumar in Ishrat Jahan case. Questioning took place at the BSF campus in Gandhinagar.

The Central Bureau of Investigation has claimed that it has evidence which shows a senior IB officer colluded in the 2004 fake encounter by the Gujarat Police. Sources say that the CBI has call detail records to prove Kumar's role in the alleged encounter and that there was evidence which shows that Kumar was aware that Ishrat and three others will be killed in a fake encounter.

CBI is also investigating whether an AK-47 assault weapon used to kill her was provided by Kumar.

Sources had claimed that Kumar not just provided intelligence input on Ishrat but was also actively involved in the encounter plan. The four victims were picked up by the IB and kept in illegal confinement for three days before the encounter. The sources had added that a day before the encounter, Ishrat and the other three men were handed over to the Gujarat Police at Valsad toll plaza. It is unlikely that IB officer Kumar will be arrested in the case.

Sources said Kumar, a 1979-Batch IPS officer of Manipur-Tripura cadre, had allegedly generated intelligence input that a group of Lashkar terrorists are coming to Ahmedabad to target Gujarat Chief Minister Narendra Modi.

During the probe, the CBI got indications that Kumar's role was not limited to the input but also in the encounter which was declared fake by the Special Investigation Team constituted by the Gujarat High Court and inquiry conducted by a Metropolitan Magistrate.

The sources said the officer had claimed in his defence that the intelligence input given by him, which had led to the encounter, was genuine and giving input does not mean that he directed police to carry out the encounter.

The Gujarat police had alleged that Ishrat was part of an LeT module which was going to target Modi.

The sources said the focus of the agency's probe has been on whether intelligence officers were active participants in the encounter.

19-year-old Ishrat, Javed Sheikh alias Pranesh Pillai, Amjad Ali Rana and Zeeshan Johar were killed in Ahmedabad on June 15, 2004 allegedly by a Crime Branch team led by DIG DG Vanzara. Meanwhile the case will be also be heard in court today in Ahmedabad. The agency plans to finalise its chargesheet in the case.

(With additional information from PTI)

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